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University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 18, 2004

Oberley Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Larry Oberley, Ph.D., professor of radiation oncology in the University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, will receive the first Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine (SFRBM). The award, which honors overall contributions to the field of free radical biology and medicine, will be presented at the SFRBM annual meeting Nov. 21 where Oberley will give a plenary lecture.

Oberley's research career of almost 30 years has focused primarily on the mitochondrial antioxidant protein manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) and how it affects both cancer cells and aging.

Among his discoveries, Oberley has shown that MnSOD acts as a tumor suppressor. He found that increasing the levels of this protein in cancer cells, which generally have low levels of MnSOD, produces a tumor suppressive effect by slowing or stopping cell proliferation. Further work examining the nature of this tumor suppression has shown that overexpression of MnSOD protein affects the expression of many genes and proteins in cancer cells, some indicating that MnSOD may also play a role in angiogenesis.

Oberley's continuing research on MnSOD and related antioxidant proteins and their roles in cancer and aging includes translating his findings into a phase I clinical trial utilizing intratumoral injections of MnSOD to increase cancer treatment efficacy.

Oberley received his master's and doctoral degrees in physics from the UI and joined the UI faculty in1975, beginning as an instructor in the Department of Radiology. He is director of the Free Radical and Radiation Biology Program, deputy director of the Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center at the UI and assistant director for basic research in the UI Center on Aging.

The Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine (formerly The Oxygen Society) was established in 1987 and is a professional organization comprised of over 1,300 scientists, researchers and clinicians with an interest in the field of free radical chemistry, biology and medicine.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at www.uihealthcare.com.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Health Science Relations, 5141 Westlawn, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1178

CONTACT: Jennifer Brown, (319) 335-9917 jennifer-l-brown@uiowa.edu

PHOTOS/GRAPHICS: Photos for this story are available for downloading at http://www.uihealthcare.com/depts/med/radiationoncology/frrb/faculty/oberley.html#research